In The Mail

I won this book!!

Thank you Stephanie from Harlequin.
Can’t wait to read it.
Publication Date: March 15, 2022

Goodreads: One woman discovers the beauty in chaos in this poignant and heartwarming story about the threads that hold family together from #1 New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery.

With her divorce settlement about to run out and a mortgage she can’t afford, Robyn Caldwell needs a plan for her future. She nurtured her family and neglected herself. But how’s she supposed to think when her daughter has become the most demanding bride ever, her son won’t even consider college, her best friend is on the brink of marital disaster and her ex is making a monumentally bad decision that could bring everything crashing down on Robyn’s head? So when her great-aunt Lillian invites her to Santa Barbara for the summer, Robyn hops on the first plane.

But it’s hard to run away when you’re the heart of the family. One by one, everyone she left behind follows her across the country. Somehow, their baggage doesn’t feel as heavy in the sun-drenched, mishmash mansion. The more time Robyn spends with free-spirited Lillian, the more she sees the appeal in taking chances—on dreams, on love, on family. Life is meant to be lived on purpose. All she has to do is muster the courage to take a chance on herself.

Favorite Books of 2021

I started the year off with Denise Hunter.
She is one of my go-to authors.

This is my first Robin Wells book
and there will be more!

As usual Kristy Woodson Harvey hit this one out of the park.
If you have not read her before, this the is one to start with, 
then you will want to read her other books!

Lauren K. Denton has written a family story you will not want to miss!
I highly recommend picking it up.

My top picks for 2021.
There were more that I enjoyed, but these are the ones I don’t think you should miss!

Holiday Doors Puzzle


This is a 1,000 pieces. Although I do enjoy White Mountain puzzles, they don’t fit my on desk, so I have to get out the card table and it gets in the way – my issue, not the puzzles! The pieces fit together well. They do have a bit of gloss finish that makes a glare some times. I have another White Mountain puzzle to do.

This puzzle made me think about how everyone decorates differently.
Which door reminds you of home?
Which is your favorite?

In The Mail

These are two Thomas Nelson authors.

One ( Denise Hunter ) I always enjoy reading and the other ( Kathleen Fuller ) is new to me.

Thank you Taylor ( HarperCollins ) for giving me the opportunity to read these.

Sleigh Bells Ring

Author: RaeAnne Thayne
Publisher: HQN
Genre: Holiday Romance
Source: HQN ( Netgalley )

Goodreads: Celebrate the season with this sparkling holiday romance, perfect for fans of Debbie Macomber, Dorthea Benton Frank, and Nancy Thayer!

Ranch manager Annie McCade thought her twin niece and nephew could join her at the Angel View Ranch for Christmas with her absent employer being none the wiser. But when the ranch’s owner, Tate Sheridan, shows up out of the blue, Annie’s plans are upended. Soon she finds herself helping Tate make a Christmas to remember for his grieving and fractured extended family.

Sleigh Bells Ring is the latest heartwarming, festive Christmas story by New York Times bestselling author RaeAnne Thayne.

Ope’s Opinion: What an amazing holiday read! RaeAnne Thayne captured my heart early on in this story and made her characters ones I was rooting for their happiness.

In this holiday book you actually got two love stories in one. Both were slow going as I like them. They all get their happy endings, as all holiday romances should be!

All is Calm, All is Bright

Author: Colleen Coble
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Genre: Holiday Romance
Source: Kristin of Kritters Rambliings

Goodreads: All Is Calm

Brendan Waddell needs a place to recuperate. Lauren Everman needs a place to hide. It’s going to be an unexpectedly romantic Christmas at Bluebird Ranch.

Brendan Waddell has always considered Bluebird Ranch a little piece of heaven: an idyllic ranch that pairs abused children with abused horses, run by one of his old Marine buddies. Now, recovering from an on-the-job injury, Brendan thinks the ranch is the perfect place to spend Christmas healing up.

When Lauren Everman was a seventeen-year-old foster kid, Bluebird Ranch was the safest place she knew. Now it’s the perfect hideout for a woman on the run. As the witness to a murder, Lauren needs somewhere to lie low, and her skill with horses means she’ll be able to lend a hand with the troubled kids at Bluebird—without answering too many questions.

Lauren’s rich hair, high cheekbones, and dark eyes immediately get Brendan’s attention—but so does her secretive behavior. This Special Ops Intel man knows a woman on the run when he sees one, and he’s not about to let her put Bluebird Ranch at risk.

But as Brendan and Lauren get to know each other, their suspicions evaporate and romance starts to sizzle. But this would-be couple has more to worry about than each other—there’s a killer on the loose who wants Lauren kept quiet.

All Is Bright

A romantic, Christmas wedding at her seaside hotel gives Delilah a chance to shine with her unique gifts. But will her light be snuffed out before the bride and groom say “I do”?

As manager of the Tidewater Inn, Delilah Carter has been planning a spectacular Christmas wedding for her friends at the grand hotel overlooking the ocean. While picking up still more twinkly lights and some last-minute groceries for the reception dinner, a huge truck runs her off the freezing, wet roads into the dark night. Her car stops just short of an enormous tree and the truck speeds off into the night. Delilah escapes with her life and has almost convinced herself the whole thing was an accident, but then she begins to receive threatening phone calls. With the wedding just hours away, she’s distracted and anxious. Then Sheriff Tom Bourne stops by the inn and volunteers to help.

Tom has always had a soft spot for Delilah, and he’s determined to protect her. But he is pulled away by a bizarre Christmas stunt that has the neighborhood reeling, and Delilah is attacked again.

Will Delilah have to cancel the Christmas wedding at Tidewater Inn? And will Tom’s protection be enough to save Delilah from the shadowy figure looming in the background? 

Ope’s Opinion: There were two short stories in one book.  The characters and story were not as deep as Colleen Coble’s normal books, but that is what you expect when the book is that short.  It is perfect for this time of year when I need something fast to keep my attention.

Each story had a mystery to go along with the romance – a lot to be packed into a few pages, yet she did a good a job of it.  I read each story in a day – perfect distraction from all the busyness of the day.

In The Mail

Publication Date: March 29, 2022
Publisher: Gallery Books

Goodreads: The New York Times bestselling author of Under the Southern Sky and the Peachtree Bluff series brings “her signature wit, charm, and heart” (Woman’s World) to this sweeping new novel following four women across generations, bound by a beautiful wedding veil and a connection to the famous Vanderbilt family.

Four women. One family heirloom. A secret connection that will change their lives—and history as they know it.

Present Day: Julia Baxter’s wedding veil, bequeathed to her great-grandmother by a mysterious woman on a train in the 1930s, has passed through generations of her family as a symbol of a happy marriage. But on the morning of her wedding day, something tells her that even the veil’s good luck isn’t enough to make her marriage last forever. Overwhelmed and panicked, she escapes to the Virgin Islands to clear her head. Meanwhile, her grandmother Babs is also feeling shaken. Still grieving the death of her beloved husband, she decides to move out of the house they once shared and into a retirement community. Though she hopes it’s a new beginning, she does not expect to run into an old flame, dredging up the same complicated emotions she felt a lifetime ago.

1914: Socialite Edith Vanderbilt is struggling to manage the luxurious Biltmore Estate after the untimely death of her cherished husband. With 250 rooms to oversee and an entire village dependent on her family to stay afloat, Edith is determined to uphold the Vanderbilt legacy—and prepare her free-spirited daughter Cornelia to inherit it—in spite of her family’s deteriorating financial situation. But Cornelia has dreams of her own. Asheville, North Carolina has always been her safe haven away from the prying eyes of the press, but as she explores more of the rapidly changing world around her, she’s torn between upholding tradition and pursuing the exciting future that lies beyond Biltmore’s gilded gates.

In the vein of Therese Anne Fowler’s A Well-Behaved Woman and Jennifer Robson’s The GownThe Wedding Veil brings to vivid life a group of remarkable women forging their own paths—and explores the mystery of a national heirloom lost to time.

Thank you Kristy for sending this beautifully presented book. I can’t wait to read it!

Only for You

Author: Barb Curtis
Publisher: Forever
Genre: Romance
Source: Forever ( Netgalley )

Goodreads: Barb Curtis returns to Sapphire Springs with this heartwarming romance where a small-town bakery owner finds herself in a fake relationship with the man she’s always pined after.

Will a fake relationship between two friends lead to true love?

After having his heart broken on national television, Tim Fraser knows only one way to stop the gossip about his love life-a new girlfriend. The problem is, he’s done with romance forever. A fake relationship with his friend and Sapphire Spring’s sweetest baker, Emily Holland, seems the perfect solution to getting rid of his newfound fame, but their fleeting fauxmance is stirring up the kinds of feelings Tim has sworn off for good.

Emily has secretly lusted after Tim for years, but pretending her feelings are all for show never factored into her fantasy. Still, her decades-long crush makes it impossible to say no to Tim’s proposal. But with each date, the lines between pretend and reality blur, giving Tim and Emily a tantalizing taste of life outside the friend zone . . . if they can find the courage to give real love a chance.

Ope’s Opinion: This is my favorite kind of romance to read – the main characters have known each other for a while and they start with a fake relationship. It was a really enjoyable read. This is the second book in a series. I did not read the first one, but I did not feel lost at all. There was a wedding being planned and I think the couple were the main characters in the first book, but not knowing them did not take away from this story.

The dual narrative really helped move the story along in this small town romance. It helped to see Tim’s point of view and why he was so hesitant to trust. Emily was hesitant also, but for different reasons. Watching their barriers come down was a great part of the story.

I am ready to visit Sapphire Springs again.

One More for Christmas

Author: Sarah Morgan
Publisher: Hqn
Genre: Holiday Romance
Source: Kristin of Kritters Ramblings

Goodreads:  From the USA TODAY bestselling author of The Christmas Sisters comes this sparkling tale of Christmas redemption. Brimming with Sarah Morgan’s trademark festive cheer, you won’t want to miss it!

For sisters Samantha and Ella Mitchell, Christmas is their most precious time of the year—a time for togetherness, love and celebration. Most of all, it’s about making up for everything their childhood Christmases lacked. But this year, they’ll be buying presents for the most unexpected guest of all—their estranged mother. It’s been five years since they last saw each other. But when their mom calls out of the blue and promises that this Christmas will be different, Samantha and Ella cautiously agree to spend it all together…

Gayle Mitchell is at the top of her career, but her success has come at a price—her relationship with her daughters. She never seemed to say or do the right things. Her tough-love approach was designed to make them stronger, but instead managed to push them away…until a brush with her own mortality forces Gayle to make amends. As the snowflakes fall on their first family celebration in years, the Mitchell women must learn that sometimes facing up to the past is all you need to heal your heart…

Ope’s Opinion: I realize this is a romance, so my complaint of the detailed steamy parts should be taken with a grain of salt.  The rest of the story, the relationships between sisters and their mother was wonderful, real and moved at a perfect pace.

If you are wanting a holiday book, I would recommend this as a good “get away” read.  You will most likely find yourself in one these characters.  The romantic relationships were fun to follow – I just didn’t need to the details behind the closed doors.

The ending was exactly what you would expect and was a wonderful read to get there.

Coming Soon…

…. On a Bookshelf near you!

In December I hope to read….

Publication Date: December 7, 2021
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Goodreads: Dare Me meets Black Swan and Luckiest Girl Alive in a captivating, voice-driven debut novel about a trio of ballerinas who meet as students at the Paris Opera Ballet School.

Fourteen years ago, Delphine abandoned her prestigious soloist spot at the Paris Opera Ballet for a new life in St. Petersburg––taking with her a secret that could upend the lives of her best friends, fellow dancers Lindsay and Margaux. Now 36 years old, Delphine has returned to her former home and to the legendary Palais Garnier Opera House, to choreograph the ballet that will kickstart the next phase of her career––and, she hopes, finally make things right with her former friends. But Delphine quickly discovers that things have changed while she’s been away…and some secrets can’t stay buried forever.

Moving between the trio’s adolescent years and the present day, The Ballerinas explores the complexities of female friendship, the dark drive towards physical perfection in the name of artistic expression, the double-edged sword of ambition and passion, and the sublimated rage that so many women hold inside––all culminating in a twist you won’t see coming, with magnetic characters you won’t soon forget.

What is coming soon …. to a bookshelf near you?

Let me know – I am always looking for a good read!